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The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar

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COVID-19 update: See the added health and safety measures this property is taking.Read more
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Travel safe during COVID-19
Visit our Travel Safe hub to see how we're helping you make more informed travel decisions during COVID-19.
What you can expect during your visit
  • Hand sanitizer available to guests & staff
  • Socially distanced dining tables
  • Tables disinfected between guests
  • Contactless payment
Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.

Ratings and reviews

#1 of 25 Bar in Napier
Travellers' Choice
RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

Food and ambience

Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, After-hours
CUISINES
Bar, Seafood, European, Pub, New Zealand
FEATURES
Outdoor Seating, Seating, Parking Available, Street Parking, Free off-street parking, Television, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wine and Beer, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Reservations, Accepts Credit Cards, Table Service, Waterfront
Reviews (2,218)
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2,169 results
Traveller rating
1,454
480
137
59
39
Traveller type
Time of year
LanguageEnglish
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Traveller rating
1,454
480
137
59
39
Show reviews that mention
All reviews venison burger whitebait fritters salad seafood ribs fries pizza fish of the day awesome service great meal hawkes bay new zealand whales tyler kat verona wharf
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Reviewed 5 days ago

Late notice family gathering (22 adults & 6 kids) was greeted with a “sure, we can do that” no fuss, no stress and friendly . Great service from Brooke and the awesome wait staff. The food was beautiful with a fantastic Paua fritter dish taking...the vote! Thanks again teamMore

Date of visit: May 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 4 days ago

We are delighted your family group enjoyed thier visit HMI1963 the paua fritter dish is very popular. Thanks for your great review.

Reviewed 1 week ago

We popped in here mid afternoon for a warm-up, a drink and snack and were very well looked after. Great service, all needs quickly met with friendly helpful staff. Thanks!

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

We are delighted you enjoyed your mid afternoon warm-up 950teresaw

Reviewed 1 week ago

Having eaten out for a few nights were keen to have a steak meal with salad and chips. SO pleased we visited here! Great choice on menu and steaks cooked to perfection - great range of steaks and sauces, with options of potato, chips, veges,...salad. Good choice of wine by the glass especially from Hawkes Bay. Service and friendliness evident from walking in door, can see why place is so popular, would be lovely sitting outside on sultry evenings having a drink too.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

The steak dishes are very popular ElsaMiro and thanks for your great review

Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Lovely team of ladies at front of house - and special thanks to Sheree & Kirsten, who seated us & attended to our needs on two occasions. We had soups, mussels & Caesar salad (all light meals) which were good, wholesale and well balanced flavour...& portion wise. Thanks too to back of house who worked hard,keeping up with the steady flow!More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago
Google Translation

Glad you enjyed you visit MobileLamb

Reviewed 1 week ago

On Friday 23 April, four of us went for lunch at the Thirsty Whale restaurant where we have been many times ever since they started. We had done reservations although the place was quite empty when we arrived and remained so till we left. The...waitress who took our order later brought some other table’s food to us and had to go back to check which table that order was for. Later our food was brought by another waitress who had served my husband and I the previous week when I had the same food; and I joked that very soon I will just say “the usual please” because that is what I always order there. We both laughed as she remembered us. After our main course we wanted the dessert menu. The two waitresses were setting up a table next to ours. Our friend called them loudly several times as either they did not hear him or were ignoring us. When they finally looked at him, he asked for the dessert menu which one of them brought to us. We had to wait for a while to place our order and during that time we all ordered coffee etc. I asked for a flat white coffee. She took the order and went away. Later, the beverage orders for the other three at our table was delivered by the male staff who prepared it, but not my flat white coffee. I thought it was on its way, but after few minutes I looked at the front counter area where they make the coffee and he seemed to be idling and doing other things. My husband went to ask him for the coffee and soon after I also went to ask for it. This beverage man shouted at me and said that he had already given me my flat white and I wanted a second one – implying that I wanted a second one for free. I replied that I did not get my order at all. He again shouted back at me accusing me of lying and wanting a second cup for free. I told him quite firmly that I did not get my order and for him to stop accusing me of lying. He was basically verbally abusing me. Soon after the waitress who had taken the order came and I asked her about my order. By this time, I was quite petrified by the verbal assault from the male staff. She left and he shouted at me that he will make one anyway and what else he was shouting I cannot recall because I was so upset with that horrifying encounter. All I could say is that I did not want it anymore and went back to our table. The dessert arrived and I was in no mood to eat anything. I basically felt sick after that terrible experience that I have never encountered anywhere ever before. It is the first time something like that happened at Thirsty Whale for us. Our friends were also extremely disappointed and kept trying to make me feel better. Soon after the manager who knows my husband and me arrived and tried to find out what had happened. The manager said that according to the other two staff that is how he always talks. They may need to get some clarification on whether shouting and accusing a customer is talking. She was most apologetic with my encounter and tried to rectify it by getting a cup of flat white coffee for me which I declined as my trust in that place had crushed. She assured me that another staff had made that coffee and not the abusive man. Coffee was the last thing I wanted there, after such a horrifying experience. I just wanted to leave that place. We were not charged for my coffee which I never got when I should have, and for my meal. The manager took my contact phone number for the owners to call me regarding my encounter with their abusive staff. I look forward to their call which I still have not received.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Reviewed 1 week ago

We sat down at 7pm, food arrived at 9pm - the food was ok , nothing to rave about , the staff were friendly but we were served last - be prepared to wait a long timeMore

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, General Manager at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Hi Steve, thank you for your review. We have checked your order docket: you arrived at 6:51, had your entrees at 7:35 (paua & shrimp cocktail) and then your mains arrived at 8:01 (seafood extravaganza & ribs). You came up to pay at 9:03. I...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

A great menu that suits all. Staff are friendly, welcoming and efficient . My husband and I have visited from Rotorua 3 times since July last year and had lunches and dinner meals during those times. We’ve never been disappointed! Our hosts Sheree and Tyler...are absolute assetsMore

Date of visit: March 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Looks like you are now regulars Cheryl we are delighted you enjoy visiting us and we hope to see you back soon

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Enjoyed lunch on the deck in the sun - both of us enjoyed the panko crumbed fish, served with fries and salad - all delicious. Efficient and friendly and professional service from both staff members we had contact with. Definitely recommend.

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

We are delighted you enjoyed your fish dish njp67

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Fourteen of us dined here based on the TA reports - what an awesome menu , something for all tastes , great food , excellent quality and 14 very happy diners . Many had the in season whitebait entrees and they were exceptional - great...wines aswell . We were so impressed we are coming back in 5 days after our bike tour . Looking forward to it already ,More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

We are delighted your group had a great experence and great food at the Thirsty John and we look forward to seeing you back in a few days time

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

We had the best service at Thirsty Whale, the food was amazing (especially the seafood platter) and the staff were great. We went to dinner with our 5 month old son and the lovely manager with the Chanel glasses took our wee man for a...walk around the restaurant. Our waiter was also really good. We will definitely be back next time we are in Napier.More

Date of visit: April 2021
Helpful?
Road59270756458, Marketing at The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Thanks for your great review Jesse and yes we would love to see you again when back in Napier

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Frequently Asked Questions about The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar

  • Yes, The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar is taking precautions against COVID-19. A full list is available within the "safety precautions" section of this page.

  • The Thirsty Whale Restaurant and Bar is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travellers:
    • Food: 4.5
    • Service: 4.5
    • Value: 4.5
    • Atmosphere: 4.5